Tony Perkin’s FRCAction Update 8/11/2010

You Say You Want a Resolution

Yesterday, House members left town almost as quickly as they entered it–but the short trip will have long consequences for a government already awash in debt. Depending on whose side you’re on, the $26.1 billion stimulus bill was either a bailout for teachers’ unions, Democrats’ reelection campaigns, or both. Thanks to Republicans, there was some legitimate business on the table during the stopover. Rep. Tom Price (R-Ga.) took the opportunity to introduce a resolution that called on Congress to avoid a controversial lame-duck session after November 2. When you’ve been fired in the real world, there’s no such thing as coming back to work and rewriting office policy. But that’s exactly what the Majority Party plans to do, according to a memo that leaked from Sen. Harry Reid’s (D-Nev.) office. The Senate Leader laid out an aggressive legislative agenda that would start on November 15. “We’re going to have a lame-duck session,” he told a gathering of the most liberal voters in the party, “So we’re not giving up.” In that four week period, Sen. Reid aims to take up everything from tax cuts to so-called clean energy bills and every ultra-Left social issue in between.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was so opposed to Rep. Price’s resolution that she tabled it. The motion to practice restraint failed 236-163 with only six Democrats agreeing to respect voters’ wishes this fall. Although liberals are literally laughing off the accusations, several are on the record supporting a very partisan lame-duck session. Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) suggested that Democrats might attempt, among other things, to move “card-check” at the end of 2010. “To those who think it’s dead,” he told a reporter, I say think again… A lot of things can happen in a lame-duck session.”

Things like undermining the Defense of Marriage Act, overturning the policy on homosexuals in the military, using taxpayer-funding to pay for RU-486 and abortions on military bases, shutting down pregnancy care centers, stripping the pro-life provisions in Appropriations bills, and silencing Christians through the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. For a full list of the possibilities, check out The Cloakroom Blog. Fortunately, some members aren’t waiting for the lame-duck session to defend marriage. Yesterday morning, a group of the House’s most solid conservatives–Reps. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), Steve King (R-Iowa), and John Fleming (R-La.)–held a press conference on Smith’s resolution to protest the California ruling to overturn Proposition 8. Like us, they believe that what happened last week showed complete disregard for both the Constitution and the will of a significant majority in America. One reporter asked if the group was doing this for political gain. Rep. Fleming said that was plain “wrong.” “I know that these people on the platform with me, we would be up here today if this were unpopular to have this resolution. We’ve run no polls…This has to do with our belief in our commitments and it also has to do with the Constitution of the United States.” That’s the kind of leadership Washington needs!


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